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George Arthur Plimpton Papers

Identifier: BC01-03

Collection Scope and Content Summary

George A Plimpton was a Trustee from 1889 to 1936 and Treasurer from 1893 to 1936. His files consist of Barnard College-related correspondence for this period, his financial history of Barnard College, some reminiscences, and financial documents. The collection includes correspondence, typescripts, financial records, and clippings relating to George A. Plimpton's activities as founder and Trustee of Barnard and his service as the College Treasurer.

The papers consist mostly of correspondence dating from the founding of Barnard in 1889 to his death in 1936. Early correspondence relates to the selection of a Dean for Barnard College. Financial records date from 1898-1919. Of special interest is a typescript, "A Financial History of Barnard", ca. 1918-1919. Other typescripts are reminiscences of General Horace W. Carpentier and Hetty Green as related to his experiences in soliciting funds for Barnard.


  • Creation: 1889 - 1936



This collection has no restrictions.

Publication Rights

Permission to publish material from the collection must be requested from the Barnard College Archives and Special Collections. The Barnard College Archives and Special Collections approves permission to publish that which it physically owns; the responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Reproduction Restrictions

Photocopies or scans may be made for research purposes.


George A. Plimpton was born in Walpole, Massachusetts in 1855. He attended Amherst College and moved to New York after graduating, where he worked as a salesman for Ginn and Heath textbook publishers. He became head of the firm in 1914. Plimpton was a member of the first Board of Trustees of Barnard College beginning in 1889, and served as Treasurer from 1893 until his death in 1936. Plimpton was the primary fundraiser for Barnard College, and was succeeded on the Board of Trustees by his son, Francis T. P. Plimpton. George A. Plimpton's interest in education and textbooks led him to establish a collection of textbooks dating from the middle ages. The collection, especially strong in mathematic texts, was donated to Columbia University at his death.


1.25 Linear Feet (3 document boxes)




This collection consists of correspondence, Barnard College financial history and documents, and reminiscences of George A Plimpton. Plimpton was a Barnard College Trustee from 1889 to 1936 and Treasurer from 1893 to 1936.

Collection Arrangement

Each box and folder in this collection is arranged chronologically.

Physical Location

This collection is located in the Barnard Archives and Special Collections, Barnard Library. To use this collection, please contact the Barnard Archives and Special Collections at 212.854.4079 or

Acquisition Information

Transferred from the Barnard College Board of Trustees.


No additions are expected.

Related Collections

BC01.11 - Francis T. Plimpton Papers

Processing History

This collection was processed and the finding aid written by Heather Lember in January 2014.

Descriptive Rules Used: Finding aid adheres to that prescribed by Describing Archives: A Content Standard.

Encoding: Machine readable finding aid encoded in EAD 2002.

Finding aid written in English.

Guide to the George Arthur Plimpton Papers
Heather Lember
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Barnard Archives and Special Collections Repository

3009 Broadway
New York NY 10027 United States